Category Archives: Water analysis – biological contamination

Focus on Queensland news.
Safe drinking water, medical uses (e.g. dialysis), recreational water and recycled water.
Identification of bacterial, parasitic and viral pathogens in Queensland water supplies.
Cryptosporidium | Giardia | Clostridium | Legionnella.
Water quality in relation to Spa pools | Swimming pools | Coliform bacteria | Faecal coliforms.
Waterborne disease outbreaks | Epidemiology.
Journal articles have a broader geographic scope.

North Queensland irrigation plan could ‘destroy’ prawn fisheries in Gulf of Carpentaria, producers warn

ABC News Rachel Carbonell 27 March 2014

The Australian prawn fishing industry says the proposed development of the country’s biggest irrigation project in North Queensland not only threatens its future in the Gulf of Carpentaria but has the capacity to “destroy” the area’s banana prawn fishery.

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MP Liz Cunningham urges commission of inquiry into Gladstone Harbour health

ABC News William Rollo 21 March 2014

State MP Liz Cunningham says the Federal Government should establish a commission of inquiry into the health of Gladstone Harbour in central Queensland.
Yesterday in Queensland Parliament, Mrs Cunningham tabled a 70-page report on the acid sulphate soil management plan for the Gladstone Harbour dredging project.

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New digital version of the 2014 Water Directory!

AWA E-News: 17 March 2014

For your convenience, the 2014 Water Directory is now available online, making it easy to access at the click of a button. This 25th edition of the Directory is an invaluable resource and reference tool for the Australian water industry, with a Who’s Who of Water Organisations, a Products & Services Guide, an Organisation Listing and a section featuring handy Australian Water Information & Statistics.

The QHFSS entry is on page 202 at

Open AWA Water Directory

Hazelwood mine water tests reveal toxic bacteria in water used to fight fire

ABC News 7 March 2014

Victoria’s Fire Services Commissioner has ordered new tests on water used to fight the fire in the Hazelwood coal mine amid concerns for the safety of the firefighters battling the blaze.

The occupational hygienist who carried out the independent test was horrified because it revealed extreme levels of E-coli and other dangerous bacteria which could get into small cuts and cause septicaemia.

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Drinking water linked to infections

(Queensland University of Technology 27 February 2014) Brisbane’s water supply has been found to contain disease carrying bugs which can be directly linked to infections in some patients, according to a new study by QUT.

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View thesis  (362 pp)

Harvested rainwater harbors pathogens

(American Society for Microbiology 26 February 2014) South Africa has been financing domestic rainwater harvesting tanks in informal low-income settlements and rural areas in five of that nation’s nine provinces. But pathogens inhabit such harvested rainwater, potentially posing a public health hazard, especially for children and immunocompromised individuals, according to a team from the University of Stellenbosch. The research was published ahead of print in Applied and Environmental Microbiology.

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View full-text manuscript

PLOS’ New Data Policy: Public Access to Data

PLOS Blogs Liz Silva 24 February 2014

Access to research results, immediately and without restriction, has always been at the heart of PLOS’ mission and the wider Open Access movement. However, without similar access to the data underlying the findings, the article can be of limited use. For this reason, PLOS has always required that authors make their data available to other academic researchers who wish to replicate, reanalyze, or build upon the findings published in our journals.

In an effort to increase access to this data, we are now revising our data-sharing policy for all PLOS journals: authors must make all data publicly available, without restriction, immediately upon publication of the article. Beginning March 3rd, 2014, all authors who submit to a PLOS journal will be asked to provide a Data Availability Statement, describing where and how others can access each dataset that underlies the findings. This Data Availability Statement will be published on the first page of each article.

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Early warning system for epidemics

(Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft 21 February 2014) The environment has an impact on our health. Preventing epidemics relies on activating the right counter-measures, and scientists are now trying to find out how better use of forecasting can help. The EU’s EO2HEAVEN project developed a risk map for correlating environmental and health data in order to identify where a disease may break out next. The concept will be on show at Booth E40 in Hall 9 of the CeBIT trade fair in Hannover.

Read EurekAlert Summary


River samples shed light on the spread of potential ‘superbugs’

(Newcastle University 16 February 2014) Experts from Newcastle University, UK, and the Indian Institute of Technology in Delhi, call on policymakers around the world to recognize the importance of clean drinking water in our fight against antibiotic resistance.

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Request the source article from Information & Research Services (QH Staff only)

Illegal wastewater release claim rejected

Townsville Bulletin DANIEL BATEMAN February 14, 2014

A  FORMER manager of Queensland Nickel’s Townsville refinery has dismissed claims the company was warned three years ago it could not discharge polluted waste water into the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park if there was an emergency.
The Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority (GBRMPA) has confirmed Queensland Nickel discharged waste water laden with ammonia, nitrogen and metals during flood events in 2009 and 2011, without its permission.